By Amy Hunt
The way we shop for a new wardrobe is set to change forever thanks to the ‘virtual mannequin’ from Amazon.
The online shopping giant is said to be in the middle of creating a 'virtual fitting room' fashion app so advanced that it can not only predict a customer’s style by looking through their social media pictures, but will also choose clothes and show customers what they’re going to look like by placing them on a virtual mannequin tailored to their body shape.
Their new app, which will need access to a customer’s personal data so that it can scour social media images, will also allow people to be able to ‘like’ and ‘dislike’ the suggestions that it has made.
Amazon customers would also find the suggestions made by the app have taken into consideration their job, where they live and what they do with their free time, meaning the outfit choices created for them are bespoke to them.
It has also been revealed that the app could go one step further and search the phones of a customer’s friends and family, so that they could allow the user to find an item of clothing to borrow.
As well as clothing, it has also been suggested that Amazon will also use the data they’re provided with to suggest other items that might be useful to the customer, depending on their hobbies and homes.
Mark Howell, creative director at strategic design agency, Play Retail, said of the reports, “an interactive personal mannequin could revolutionise clothes shopping. The potential amount of data that this technology will be able to generate for Amazon is staggering.
“By having access to a customer’s photos, the retailer can see what they wear, what they drive, and even inside their home to predict what products an individual is most likely to want to buy.”
While this huge change in the way we shop would mean we no longer need to head to the high street, it does mean it will help the environment by reducing the number of ‘serial returners’ - people who buy the same items in numerous sizes so they can try them on at home and return whatever doesn't fit.
Whether you would want Amazon riffling through your phone or not, it seems we will be shopping in the traditional way for a little while longer yet.
Despite the excitement that this new fashion app has created, the ‘virtual fitting room’ is still in the early stages of development, so don’t quit the high street just yet!
Amy Hunt is Life Channel Editor at womanandhome.com, having been with the brand since 2015. She began as the magazine's features assistant before moving over to digital as a News and Features Writer, before becoming Senior Writer, and now a Channel Editor. She has worked on either women's lifestyle websites previously too—including Woman's Weekly, Goodto.com, Woman, and Woman's Own. In 2019, Amy won the Digital Journalist of the Year award at the AOP Awards, for her work on womanandhome.com. She is passionate about everything from books, to homes, to food and the latest news on the royal family. When she isn't editing or updating articles on cleaning, homewares, the newest home gadgets, or the latest books releases for the website, she's busy burying her nose in a gripping thriller, practising yoga, or buying new homeware of her own.
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